Mentorship, Technical Assistance, and Community Building for Farmers: Join the Transition to Organic Partnership Program
The Northeast Organic Farming Association of New Hampshire (NOFA-NH) is delighted to be partnering with the New Hampshire Maple Producers Association (NHMPA) on the USDA’s Transition to Organic Partnership Program (TOPP). TOPP is a five-year program focused on developing farmer to farmer mentorships, technical assistance, community building, networking, and workforce development opportunities for organic farmers, and farmers interested in transitioning to organic production. NOFA-NH is a core partner in TOPP in the Northeast, and NHMPA is part of NOFA-NH’s TOPP Cohort aimed at expanding this work across the state and region. Learn more about the TOPP Program here.
Become a TOPP Mentor or Mentee
The TOPP peer-to-peer mentorship program matches experienced and knowledgeable certified organic producers who are passionate about organic production and interested in sharing their expertise with farmers who want to transition to certified organic production (Mentees). Mentees are transitioning producers who have existing farming operations where they are currently employees, managers, or owners. Mentors and Mentees will be matched based on their needs and scope of production, and the program includes 45 hours of one-to-one mentorship over a year’s time.
TOPP Mentor and Mentee applications are accepted year-round. Please submit an application by October 13, 2023 to participate over the coming year. Mentors and Mentees will be matched in October with training beginning in November.
To learn more about upcoming TOPP events in New Hampshire, participate in the TOPP mentorship program, and apply as a TOPP Mentor or Mentee please visit www.nofanh.org/topp. Ple
What is TOPP?
The USDA’s Transition to Organic Partnership Program (TOPP) is investing up to $100 million over five years into cooperative agreements with non-profit organizations and their partners to provide technical assistance and wrap-around support for transitioning and existing organic farmers. The USDA Agricultural Marketing Service is building partnership networks in six regions across the United States with trusted organizations serving direct farmer training, education, and outreach activities.
Key TOPP Initiatives Include:
– Organic farmer-to-farmer mentorship
– Community building opportunities
– Technical assistance and training
– Workforce training and development
New Hampshire Maple Producers Association is part of a New Hampshire TOPP cohort developed by the Northeast Organic Farming Association of New Hampshire (NOFA-NH). NOFA-NH is a core partner in the Northeast/Mid-Atlantic TOPP region.
New Hampshire Maple Producers Association’s Role:
NHMPA will co-host two events with NOFA-NH and NH TOPP Cohort partners over the coming year to promote the TOPP Mentorship Program, provide outreach to farmers, and share information about organic agricultural practices with the NH farm and food network.
TOPP is actively seeking to match experienced and knowledgeable certified organic producers who are passionate about organic production and interested in sharing their expertise with TOPP mentees. Mentees are transitioning producers who have existing farming operations where they are currently employees, managers, or owners.
Learn more about participating in the mentorship program as a Mentor or Mentee and Apply at www.nofanh.org/topp.
TOPP Cohort Members Include:
Cheshire County Conservation District, Granite State Graziers, Kearsarge Food Hub, National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT), New England Farmers Union, New Hampshire Farm Bureau Federation, New Hampshire Maple Producers Association, NH Food Alliance and the NH Food Hub Network, NH Queer Farmers Network, Northeast Organic Dairy Producers Association (NODPA), Northeast Organic Farming Association of New Hampshire (NOFA-NH), Seacoast Eat Local, UNH Extension, and Vital Communities.